Will Tiger Shroff's Pepsi commercial hit his brand credibility as fitness icon?

While some industry experts say Pepsi’s latest ad campaign #harghoonthmeinswag will affect Shroff's other endorsements, others opine that just a brand sign-up won't take away his fitness tag

by Noel Dsouza
Published - Feb 27, 2019 8:24 AM Updated: Feb 27, 2019 8:24 AM
Tiger Shroff Pepsi Ad campaign

Actor Tiger Shroff proclaimed his love for brand Pepsi in his latest ad campaign #harghoonthmeinswag that was released on Valentine’s Day. In an Instagram post, he wrote: “In a committed relationship with #Pepsi #harghoonthmeinswag @pepsiindia”. 

However, Shroff’s fans who have idolised him for his commitment to fitness don’t seem to have taken this well. While some said endorsing a brand as an actor would not affect Shroff’s credibility as a fitness icon, others said promoting an unhealthy lifestyle through the commercial would affect his brand credibility as a fitness icon. 

Shroff has also been associated since 2018 with activewear brand PROWL, which targets consumers aged between 18 and 25. He also represents the gym CultFit. Hence, endorsing a brand that does not resonate with fitness can hamper his brand credibility. 

Other celebrities known for their fitness like skipper Virat Kohli and Indian badminton coach Pullela Gopichand have declined to endorse aerated beverages as it promotes an unhealthy lifestyle. 

We at exchange4media posed the question: Who is at loss? Tiger Shroff or Pepsi’s brand value? 

Mithun Mukherjee, Associate Creative Director, Grapes Digital
“Brands often pick celebrities on the basis of the appeal they have among the masses. Tiger Shroff has a gym named after him and he is the brand ambassador of CultFit. He has pretty much arrived on the fitness scene. Now with the big signup by Pepsi he will grace not only the television sets but virtually hundreds of ATL (Above The Line) brand presence across the country. This will hardly impact his ‘fit’ image. Riding on star power and his own physicality, a simple brand sign-up is not going to take away his fitness tag. Audiences can continue to expect him to pull off incredible stunts, be it in his movies or brand endorsements. Not to mention, the rub off on his brand tie-ups might only go for the better, especially after such a big one.”

N Chandramouli, CEO, TRA Research
“The endorser should be good for the brand and the brand should be good for the endorser. There have been cases where endorsers stepped out of their persona for a brand. Sometimes brands have dropped endorsers because they are not the perfect brand representative. When Tiger Shroff goes on to say that I have a growing relationship with Pepsi, the brand has definitely gained but the actors has definitely lost his brand credibility. Brand CureFit used to have Hrithik Roshan as its endorser and now has Tiger Shroff. He has indeed lost a lot of brand trust with this campaign. There will also be issues with other brands he is working with which promote fitness. The character of the person should relate to the brand and vice-versa. Today, health and obesity is a major issue. It has become second nature to kids now to have these aerated drinks with food. The issue arises when these kids see a celebrity like Tiger Shroff promoting Pepsi.”

Kiran Khalap, Brand Consultant, Co-Founder of Chlorophyll Brand Consultancy
“In 2003, US Surgeon General Richard Carmona said: ‘Obesity is the fastest-growing cause of illness and death in the United States’. Since obesity is linked with carbonated drinks, Pepsi’s stocks fell the next day. I don’t see Tiger Shroff getting affected in the short run, but in the long run he might get called out for lack of authenticity. Carbonated drinks do not equal fitness, which is the one attribute all millennials look for in their role models. Pepsi has only gained by using Tiger Shroff for its ad campaign.”

Thus, it remains to be seen how the Pepsi commercial will pan out for Shroff in the days to come.

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